independent

Thursday 21 June 2018

Meyler pleased with progress

John Meyler has all the reason in the world to be happy right now with four points from three games in the Munster Senior Hurling Championship firmly tucked away in his back pocket.

All that said, with two draws from their last two fixtures in games that could easily have gone the Rebels' way, Meyler could be already planning for a Munster Final - but all in all, the manager continues to look at the positives of his first year in the hot seat.

"I am perfectly happy sitting here with four points, unbeaten and that is how I look at it. We came unstuck there today in the second half but for us to come back and hit them with three points at the end showed fantastic character from the lads - character we showed against Tipperary last week as well. You know playing three games in 13 days was hard but the lads really rose to the occasion in the last five or 10 minutes."

It wasn't all comfortable viewing for Meyler who had at times doubts that the game would go his side's way.

"Midway through the second half I was worried - we weren't going right. We were making sloppy mistakes and turning the ball over and we rectified that. A few of the big characters stood up with Fitzy [Darragh Fitzgibbon] getting a good point, Lehane [Conor] got a great point and Hoggy [Patrick Horgan] again. Anthony Nash stood up and that is what you need."

Meyler was not only delighted with the way his side played but also at the way the whole championship is panning out this year.

"All the games have been extremely competitive and that is what you want. The three games that Cork has been involved in have been incredibly exciting. Tonight 48 - 50 scores, you couldn't ask for more and the 35,000 people came here on a Saturday night got value for money.

"What you saw tonight was hurling at its best. You have seen Cork and Limerick go at it again with brilliant entertainment, brilliant scores - everything that was really good about sport. You couldn't ask for more.

"There was some incredible hurling there tonight and that last five minutes when you saw the Cork crowd stand up when we got three points in a row - Cork people love the hurling that Cork play and we need to see a sea of red in Thurles tomorrow fortnight.

"We are unbeaten and that is the important thing and we bring that to Thurles in two weeks' time, but playing Waterford up there is going to be extremely competitive, but we know that and we know what we have to do.

"We will have to focus on Waterford. They will have played four games in four weeks by then so tiredness can't be an excuse for us. The fitness levels were really good there at the end and I am really pleased with that.

"The game in two weeks gives us a longer recovery time than the six days we had coming from Thurles to here but the lads love the game a week. It's Waterford two weeks tomorrow, we know our goal, we know our objective."

Meyler was asked about whether the format needs to be tweaked after it emerged that no side that had played three weeks in a row had perfect records and his answer was emphatic.

"There is no tweaking. People talk about professionalism and people talk about fitness levels. It is a game every week and players love that structure. You couldn't ask for a better advert for hurling."

Corkman

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